New Data Shows Teen Girls More Likely to Perceive Benefits in Drug and Alcohol Use

June 30, 2010

New York, NY, June 29, 2010 – Survey data released today by the Partnership for a Drug-Free America® and MetLife Foundation found that teenage girls are more likely than teenage boys to perceive potential benefits from drug use and drinking, making teen girls more vulnerable to drug and alcohol abuse.

According to a new research analysis of the 2009 Partnership Attitude Tracking Study (PATS), sponsored by MetLife Foundation, teen girls are more likely to associate “self-medicating” benefits with drinking and getting high.

Click here to read full article.

U.S. High School Students Less Likely to Begin Drinking or Smoking Before Age 13 in 2009 Than in 1999

June 29, 2010

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June 21, 2010–A Weekly FAX from the Center for Substance Abuse Research reports on ‘U.S. High School Students Less Likely to Begin Drinking or Smoking Before Age 13 in 2009 Than in 1999’.

The percentage of high school students who first tried alcohol or cigarettes before age 13 has decreased over the past decade, according to data from the recently released 2009 Youth Risk Behavior Survey.

Click here to read full article.

Funding Announcement: Grant Announcement

June 28, 2010

William T. Grant Foundation
The Foundation offers service improvement grants to organizations that serve youth directly, such as after-school programs and youth-service organizations. These awards, which make up a modest portion of the our grantmaking, are designed to improve the quality of services for young people ages 8 to 25. Service improvement grants are capped at $25,000 and are available to organizations in New York City only.

Click here to read full grant information.

Major New Tobacco Rules Take Effect This Week

June 22, 2010 reports in a news summary that restrictions on cigarette branding and new labeling requirements go into effect June 22 — part of the new federal Tobacco Control Act — HealthDay News reported June 17.

As of Tuesday, cigarettes may no longer be branded as “light,” “mild,” or “low”: cigarette companies are switching to color names instead to differentiate their brands. Cigarette packs also will have larger and more detailed warning labels, and cigarette companies will be barred from sponsoring cultural or sporting events.

Sales of tobacco products to anyone under age 18 will now be prohibited under federal law, as well, and cigarette vending machines will be limited to locations frequented only by adults.

Teens May Be More Sensitive to Dopamine Release, Study Suggests

June 21, 2010
Jun 17, 2010 reports on a small research study which indicates that the teenagers may experience the release of the brain’s pleasure-and-reward chemical dopamine more acutely than children or adults. Researchers said the findings could help explain why teens are more prone to risk-taking than people of other ages.

The study by UCLA researcher Jessica Cohen and colleagues involved 45 subject who were offered cash rewards for correctly performing a task. MRI scans showed that the dopamine-sensitive striatal area of the brains of the 14- to 19-year-olds in the study group “lit up” more strongly than those of other age groups when the reward was given.

The research was published online in the journal Nature Neuroscience.


June 18, 2010

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) recently announced that all the states and the District of Columbia have continued to meet their goals of curtailing sales of tobacco to underage youth (those under 18).

In federal fiscal year 2009, for the first time ever, the data show a slight increase in the average national rate of tobacco sales to underage youth of about one percent. States goals, set under the Synar Amendment program – a federal and state partnership, are aimed at ending illegal tobacco sales to minors.

The Synar Amendment supports the national Healthy People 2010 objective to reduce the illegal sales rate to minors through enforcement of laws prohibiting the sale of tobacco products to minors.

The FFY2009 Annual Synar Reports: State Compliance, which includes compliance rates for each of the states and the District of Columbia, as well as a section on compliance rates for the U.S. Jurisdictions, is available at

National Prevention Council to be Established Under New Law

June 18, 2010

On June 10, 2010, the White House announced an Executive Order to establish the National Prevention, Health Promotion, and Public Health Council under the new healthcare law.

The purpose of the council is to develop a national public health strategy with specific goals for improving Americans’ health, and to recommend actions and timelines for accomplishing those goals. The council will be made up of Cabinet members and other top administration officials.

The council will also produce annual reports from July 1, 2010, through Jan. 1, 2015 that describe progress toward those goals. The reports are to contain a list of national priorities to address “lifestyle behavior modification,” including topics such as substance abuse disorders, smoking cessation, mental health and behavioral health.

Click here to view the White House press release.

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